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Caffeine, Cocaine, and the Soda of a Nation on August 26

Each month, our Masters of Social Gastronomy lectures bring you the history and science behind your favorite foods. Up this month: soda

Caffeine, cocaine, and a little bit of fizz were all it took to hook America on a brand-new beverage. We'll dissect Coca-Cola's namesakes, exploring the now-illicit 'Coca' and the Africa-sourced 'Cola'. What joined these two bitter, unappealing flavors into the most iconic of soda flavorings?

But don't forget...

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Class Recap

The Root Beer and Sarsaparilla Taste Test

If there's one thing Homemade Root Beer, Soda & Pop and Fix the Pumps neglected to tell me in their deep dark secret-revealing takes on root beer and soda, it's that sarsaparilla is totally a thing in Asia.

I'd thought it was just for olden days cowboys and specialty soda producers, but I was w-r-o-n-g. It shows up all over the place sporting the name sarsi.

While we in the Western hemisphere have condensed all our herb-y, root-y...

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Blog Post

Chinatown Roulette: Vinegar drinks

When you go to Chinatown, you're morally obligated to buy strange and unfamiliar goods, then decipher (and eat) them back home. It's Chinatown Roulette!

I was on the prowl for Taiwanese sarsaprilla for my root beer class when I was suddenly found myself face-to-face with the drink of my dreams:

Vinegar drinks. Apple vinegar drink. Plum vinegar drink. Beautiful, amazing, vinegary vinegar drinks.



A poorly-kept secret about me is that I...

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Let's Make: Soda Syrups!

Soda syrup! Have you ever worked at a restaurant where you had to change out the bags of syrup for the soda fountain? And you got it all over yourself the first two times because you didn't know how to open them? And then the third time you thought you did it right but it leaked all over the place? Me too! As revenge, let's learn how to make that at home.

Soda syrup's main purpose in life is to be mixed with seltzer water. Then you've got...

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